Porsche develops first production racer with natural-fiber body parts

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Porsche has announced that its 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport will be the first production racer to feature natural-fiber composite body parts. Available in two variants – the Trackday model and the Competition model – the cars have been designed for both national and international racing.

During development, the focus was put on greater drivability and faster lap times, and on the sustainable use of raw materials. The driver and co-driver doors and the rear wing are made of an organic fiber mix, which are sourced primarily from agricultural by-products such as flax or hemp fibers, and feature similar properties to carbon fiber in terms of weight and stiffness.

Powering the 718 GT4 Clubsport is a 3.8-liter flat-six engine producing 425bhp. Compared with its predecessor, this represents a 40bhp increase in performance. The power is transferred to the rear wheels via a Porsche dual-clutch gearbox with six gears and mechanical rear-axle differential lock.

The lightweight spring-strut front suspension is taken from the 911 GT3 Cup. The racing brake system features 380mm steel brake discs all around. Delivered ex-works with a welded-in safety cage, a racing bucket seat as well as a six-point harness, the 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport weighs in at 1,320kg.

Porsche’s Competition model has been developed for racing. The shock absorbers can be adjusted in three stages. The safety fuel tank’s capacity of 115 liters is suitable for long-distance events. Thanks to a brake balance system, the balance bias can be adjusted between the front and rear axle.

An integrated air jack system guarantees fast pit stops. The quick-release racing steering wheel adopted from the 911 GT3 R ensures a range of adjustment options for the driver.

“The new Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport possesses significantly more racing genes than its successful predecessor,” said Porsche’s head of motorsport, Fritz Enzinger. “The power of the engine has increased considerably. At the same time, we were able to increase the downforce and the cockpit is now even better suited to drivers’ needs.”

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Sam joined the UKi Media & Events automotive team in 2017, having recently graduated from the University of Brighton with a degree in journalism. For the newest addition to the editorial team, stepping into the assistant editor position signalled the start of a career in the subject he studied. Now deputy editor for Professional MotorSport World and Engine + Powertrain Technology International, Sam writes content for both of the magazines and websites.

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